Mother’s Day Class 11 Summary, Explanation, Question Answer

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Mother’s Day Class Chapter Sketch

This humorous play portrays the status of a mother in the family. The author brings out the plight of the mother very realistically in the play. Mrs. Annie Pearson, the mother, is not treated well by her husband and children. With the help of her neighbor, Mrs Fitzgerald and a magic spell that temporarily allows them to interchange their roles, she stands up for her rights. Mrs Annie Pearson’s family is shocked at the change, but they learn to behave properly with her so that she gets the respect that she deserved.

Mother’s Day Class 11 Summary

Introduction of Mrs Annie Pearson and Mrs. Fitzgerald Mrs Annie Pearson and Mrs Fitzgerald are next door neighbours. Apart from this, there is no similarity between them. Annie is a pleasant and nervous looking woman in her forties. Fitzgerald is an older and heavier woman with a strong personality.

Annie has a soft voice whereas Mrs Fitzgerald has a deep, throaty voice. Mrs Fitzgerald is a fortune-teller and is reading Annie’s fortune. She advises Annie to be strict and become the ‘boss’ in her family.

Annie or Mrs. Pearson had been taken granted by her family. Her husband, son and daughter are so spoilt that they don’t do any work or help their wife or mother. Instead, they treat her disrespectfully and ungratefully. Mrs. Fitzgerald is enraged at such a treatment and asks Mrs. Pearson to take action. However, Mrs. Pearson is reluctant. Even though she wants others in her family to respect her, she cannot be 89unpleasant with them. So she is constantly worried about them.

Mrs Fitzgerald Outlines the Plan to Reform Annie’s Family

Mrs Fitzgerald, suggests that they should temporarily exchange their personalities by using a magic spell that she had learnt in the East. She takes Annie’s hand and chants a spell. A transformation takes place and the personality of Mrs Fitzgerald shifts into the body of Annie and vice-versa.

Annie is scared, but Mrs Fitzgerald assures her that the change is reversible. Mrs Fitzgerald, now in the body of Annie, stays at Annie’s house and sends Annie (in Mrs Fitzgerald’s body) to her house where she can relax.

Doris Gets a Shock

Doris, the daughter of Mrs Annie Pearson, a beautiful 20 year old girl enters the house. She gets shocked at seeing her mother smoking and playing cards alone. She enquires about tea and her yellow silk dress but gets a rude reply from her mother. Annie tells her to make tea for herself and iron her clothes herself too. She tells Doris that she works much more than her and does not even get a pay.

Further, when Doris informs her mother about her plans with Charlie Spence, Annie makes fun of him. She calls him buck teeth and half-witted. Annie also tells Doris that if she were her age, she would have found someone better. All of this hurts Doris who runs away crying.

Cyril also gets a Shock

After Doris leaves, Cyril, Annie’s son enters the room, asking for tea, when Annie tells him it isn’t, he gets annoyed and angry. He tells his mother to get the tea ready as he doesn’t have much time but Annie doesn’t do anything. Even when he asks about his clothes, Annie refuses to do anything. Cyril gets anguished by his mother’s strange behaviour. He tells her that she was not talking nicely. His mother coldly replies that they all talk to her like that. They do what theywant to do and now she has joined them.

Just then Doris enters the scene wearing a shoulder wrap. She had been crying. Annie, upon seeing Doris, remarks that she was looking terrible. Dories tells her mother that it was because he made her cry. Annie now goes to get stout to drink.

Discussion between Doris and Cyril

Both Doris and Cyril are filled with horror and shock at their mother’s behaviour. Both wonder what has happened to theirmother suddenly. Doris thinks that she got hit on her head by something. She says that the manner in which their mother spoke hurt her the most and made her cry. Both start giggling at the thought of what will happen if their mother keeps behaving in this weird manner in front of their father.

Annie’s Remarks About her Family

When Annie sees Doris and Cyril giggling she remarks that it was high time they grew up. Doris then asked her if they had done something wrong. Annie tells them that it is actually their behaviour that bothered her the most. They always came, asked for something and went without bothering to know whether she wanted to go out or how she was feeling. She always does her best to keep everybody happy but all three of them were not bothered about her.

Annie also remarks that while the three of them do a job of eight hours a day with two days off at the weekend, she goes on working seven days round the clock. She informs them that on weekends, she might also be going away. Doris is really worried about what will happen if her mother takes a holiday on weekends.

However, Annie assures Doris that she would do some work on Saturday and Sunday only when she is requested and thanked for whatever she does. She adds that she might go out for weekends as she was fed up of staying in the house. When Dorris enquires about it, Annie tells her that she is just going to be like them. The only difference will be that she will be able to look after herself.

Hearing this, Dorris expresses her concern but Annie rudely shuts her down.

Mr George Pearson is Shockedm at his Wife’s Behaviour

Mr George Pearson now enters the house. He is about 50 years old and considers himself as a very important person. He gets annoyed at his wife who is sipping stout when he enters. He tells her that he does not want any tea as he has to go to the club for supper. Annie tells him that she has not prepared any tea anyway. At this, George gets annoyed that his wife is not bothered about him.

Annie continues to rebuke him, telling him that he is not respected in the club where he keeps going every day. She tells him that people at the bar in the club call him ‘Pompy-ompy Pearson’ due to his self-important behaviour.

George cannot believe what Annie says and confirms the truth from his son, Cyril. When Cyril tells his mother that she has hurt their feelings, Annie tells him that it does people good to have their feelings hurt. She also tells Cyril that he has no future. Just then there is a knock. Cyril checks on the door and reports that it was the ‘silly old bag’ Mrs Fitzgerald. Hearing this, Annie rebukes him and asks him to let her in.

The Real Mrs Annie Pearson Returns

Mrs. Fitzgerald (actually Mrs. Pearson) is worried for her family. When she expresses it, Cyril rudely answers her. Such a disrespectful behaviour earns a scolding from Annie (Mrs. Fitzgerald). After Cyril leaves, Mrs. Fitzgerald and Mrs. Pearson start talking. Annie says that she is putting everyone in their places telling them how they really are. While they are talking, George enters the room and gets angry and rude towards Mrs.

Fitzgerald for entering their quarrel. He is also angry at Annie for ruining their mood. But Annie remains unaffected. In fact, she tells him to be respectful and mannerful in front of guests and neighbors. Hearing this George is enraged which gets Annie to threaten him. Seeing his angry wife, George is intimidated. Doris again enters the scene. She, like her brother and father, is also disrespectful towards Mrs. Fitzgerald and thus gets reprimanded too.

Mrs Annie Pearson and Mrs Fitzgerald Go Back to their Original Personalities

The real Mrs Annie Pearson (now Mrs. Fitzgerald) gets really disturbed and wants everyone to leave as she wants to talk in private with Annie (the real Mrs. Fitzgerald). She tells Mrs. Fitzgerald that she can see all of them are miserable and now it is time to change back into their true selves. Mrs. Fitzgerald agrees and they again get back to their own selves.  

After they come back in their original forms, Mrs. Fitzgerald tells Mrs. Pearson to be firm and strict, if required. She even warns her not to give any apology or explanation, otherwise they will again start treating her indifferently. She must wear a tough look and talk to them rudely if she wanted them to behave in the right manner. Mrs. Fitzgerald wants Mrs Pearson to test it out. When she leaves, she calls the family inside and hides herself to hear/see the change.

The Changed Pearson Family

When Doris, Cyril and George enter the room, they get relieved seeing Mrs. Pearson smile. She tells her family that she wants to play a game of rummy with her family. After that, the children can prepare supper while she talks to George. Everyone agrees while Doris is hesitant. However, a sharp tone of Mrs. Pearson makes her agree. The play ends with the family surrounding Mrs. Pearson ready to do whatever she suggests.

Mother’s Day Word Meanings

Word – Meaning
portrayal – depiction
living-room – drawing-room
suburb – outlying area of a city
muslin-covered – covered with a muslin curtain
settee – sofa
sinister – strong
flurried – nervous and confused due to overwork
Cockney – style of speaking of people living in the East end of London
Irish – style of speaking of people living in Ireland
fortune teller – person claiming to have magic powers
out East – in the British colonies in Asia
Lieutenant Quartermaster – non-commissioned officer in British Army
put your foot down – be very strict
mistress – woman with authority
apologetically – as if feeling sorry
treating ’em like dirt – showing lack of respect
dubiously – in an unsure manner
unpleasantness – quarrelling
have it out – settle it finally
good gracious – an expression of surprise
embarrassed – feeling awkward
flustered – agitated
got the idea – understood me
gimme – give me
muttering – speaking in a low voice
go lax – looking like they are dead
puffing – smoking
complacently – feeling happy and satisfied
chuckling – laughing quietly
patience – a card game played by a single person
taken anything in – understood what is going on
astounded – surprised
fluttering – unsteady
square meal – full and satisfying meal
the Clarendon – name of a local restaurant
indignantly – with annoyance
rubbish – uselessly
be seen dead – like to be seen
buck teeth – upper set of teeth sticking out
half-witted – stupid
masculine counterpart – brother
off-colour – not feeling well
get cracking – work quickly
aggressively – forcefully
put my things out – lay out my clothes
staggered – shocked
laconic and sinister – briefly and meaningfully
wear that face – look so bad
Union – association of employees
bar – stop
movement – association of employees
never you mind – don’t bother
stout – strong beer
clot – idiot
in a huddle – come close together to talk
barmy – insane
fathead – idiot
concussion – serious injury to her head
far-fetched – unlikely
giggle – laugh in a silly manner
guffaw – laugh loudly
contempt – disgust
be your age – behave properly as per your age
do with – appreciate
a bit thick – unreasonable
airily – carelessly
aghast – horrified
passionately – with much emotion
blubbering – crying like a baby
solemn – formal and dignified
pompous – overbearing, self-important
bulge – stick out
fancied – feel a desire for
bewildered – confused, puzzled
distaste – dislike
aggrieved – feeling hurt
indignantly – in a displeased tone
standing jokes – permanent amusements
dazed – totally astonished
appealingly – urgently requesting
gloomily – sadly
greyhound races – races run by tall, slender dogs
dirt tracks – racing courses for motorcycles
ice shows – entertainment shows performed by ice skaters
sulkily – showing an irritated feeling
old bag – unpleasant elderly woman
smacking – bringing together with force so they make a sound
ushering – bringing
piecan – stupid person
severely – strictly
glowering – angry
putting ’em in their places – making them behave properly
doing ’em all a world of good – helping them to learn how to behave properly
eating out of your hand – completely under your control
glumly – sadly
crying her eyes out – crying uncontrollably
at sixes and sevens – in total confusion
bitterly – angrily
intimidated – frightened
taunting – teasing
tiddly – slightly drunk
in despair – hopelessly
a flash of temper – sudden anger
ticking her off – reprimanding her
’cos – because
go soft on – treat gently
spirit – enthusiasm
apprehensively – anxiously
rummy – a card game
cluster round – surround


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